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5 Summer Inspired Soirees: Food, Décor & Activity Ideas

Updated: Jun 23, 2020

Turn your favorite summer activity into a soiree!

Summer fun doesn’t need to be put on hold as we continue to practice social distancing. We can keep the celebrations going by continuing to relish the small pleasures of summer with our family and friends. We can still enjoy ice cream, a good BBQ, water activities, biking, and tropical delights. What’s even more exciting is turning these summer experiences into a fabulous party for the family or a small guestlist to enjoy!

Follow the below tips for the best summer parties. Adorn has got you covered with a variety of ideas on food, decor, and activities for the following themes: 1) Ice Cream, 2) Grill & Chill, 3) Beach, 4) Bike, and 5) Tiki.


We all scream for an ice cream party!


Go simple with food because the dessert will be the star of this soiree.

  • Sandwiches, pasta, salad, or pizza

  • Popsicles and/or an ice cream bar (with several topping options) to make ice cream sundaes/cones for the the party highlight


Most likely you’ll keep it simple since it is an intimate gathering. A couple of ideas to highlight ice cream are:


  • Make your own frozen treat: You can provide 3-4 fruit juice flavors & a few different fruit (e.g., peaches/strawberries) sliced for the family to choose their favorite or make a tasty combo. Put desired juice & fruit in a popsicle mold and freeze. For a variety of tasty and healthy popsicle recipes, click here. Frozen treat creations will need to start early for party guests to enjoy their this dessert during the party. If at home, it may not matter as the family can have the frozen treat the next day, and still enjoy the sundae bar.

  • For a more playful freezer activity, freeze small items (e.g., small figurines, cars) the night before the party and have a contest for who can unfreeze them first.

  • Water play - balloon toss (start close in distance to other players & toss the balloon; continue to move farther back each round; whoever drops the balloon/gets splashed is out), pool time, sprinkler play, and/or water gun fight

  • Freeze game throughout the night -- play music and whenever it stops everyone must stand in place. Whoever moves is out. Last one standing in place wins!


Call it a Chill and Grill party, and do just that -- chill and grill with your loved ones. Cool down with these festivities to get the party started.


Grilled everything!

  • Veggie and/or meat kabobs

  • Hotdogs, hamburgers, and/or grilled chicken/steak

  • Grilled pineapple, watermelon and/or tomato

  • Classic baked beans, mac n cheese, macaroni or potato salad, and corn on the cob

  • S'mores for dessert


Set your guests up for some camping or glamping, but keep it chill.

  • Tents: Add streamers, balloons or lights for some glam.

  • Centerpiece on top of a burlap table runner for a woodland feel: camp fire craft (smaller camp fire designs can be surrounded by pine cones, leaves, and nuts) or a jar centerpiece with marshmallows and 3-4 paper cutouts of trees/bears/mountains on bamboo sticks placed in the jar


  • Guests making their own s’mores

  • Water play (see examples above)

  • Camp stories


You might not be able to party at the beach, but you can have a beach-themed party!


No sand - Have a picnic on your grass, and get beachy with kinetic sand.

  • Burgers and hotdogs or sandwiches

  • Fruit platter or fruit salad - watermelon, grapes, apples, berries

  • Popsicles of course

  • Cupcakes with a beach object topper e.g., flip flop, seashell, surfboard (print online pictures you like and paste on a toothpick, 1 cutout on each side glued together so the topper can be viewed from both sides)


  • Ocean blue and white tablecloths

  • Seashells in a mason jar with a blue ribbon around the jar as the centerpiece


  • Pass the beach ball: The ball can't touch the ground for the remainder of the party; whoever drops the ball gets splashed with water. (Maybe some parameters can be set; for example, the ball thrower must call the other person’s name first before throwing the ball to them. Or, the ball cannot be placed on a table or blanket; it must be carried or thrown to another person.)

  • Kinetic sand castle contest

  • Dance off on boogie boards to The Beach Boys' music

  • Sunbathing and/or water play (examples above under Ice Cream Party Activities)

For added fun, especially if your guests enjoy friendly competition, include small prizes for game winners. If among family, up the stakes and save money with prizes like the winner doesn’t have to wash dishes for 2 days, or the winner gets to choose dinner or the next movie for the family.


Put some streamers on your bike and go riding! Elevate this activity with the below entertainment to make it a bike-themed celebration.


Keep it light for this day party with appetizers for brunch or lunch

  • Veggie platter or just carrot and celery sticks with dip

  • Fruit platter or fruit salad - watermelon, kiwi, pineapple, peach, blackberry, raspberries

  • Grilled chicken bites

  • Avocado toast (could be served sliced)

  • Eggs and french toast or waffle triangles/squares for brunch


Let the bike be the focus - pimp your ride!

  • Pom poms or streamers for the handles

  • Flowers (fresh or paper in the basket for bikes that have a basket)

  • Wrap your favorite color streamers around the middle base of the bike or put a flag banner here instead (as long as it doesn’t obstruct riding)

  • Streamers and/or colorful bicycle clips or beads for the inside of the wheel, on the spoke


Add to the fun with small prizes for these bike activities.

  • Coolest Bike Tricks game: Each person takes turns showing off their bike tricks for 2 minutes, and then everyone votes on who did the coolest tricks. Get creative with multiple rounds (perhaps with longer times to do tricks or specific challenges). The person with the most votes wins. If there’s a tie, then have a bike off to break the tie.

  • Bike race: In a safe, open space race your bikes. Remember to hydrate!


Have a tropical staycation in your own backyard. Go on an exotic adventure with the following party ideas:


  • Shrimp and fish on the grill is sure to please the seafood lovers. Make grilled shrimp, bell pepper, and pineapple skewers or grilled shrimp and lime skewers for a tasty tropical delight.

  • Add mango or pineapple to guacamole for a tropical twist

  • Tropical alcoholic beverages i.e., Mai Tai, guava coconut rum cocktail, or simply Malibu and pineapple or nonalcoholic versions

  • Tropical fruit favorites: watermelon, kiwi, and pineapple


  • Consider magenta, red, and yellow table cloths with green leaves/vines as a centerpiece

  • Another table cover option could be yellow tablecloth with a green or green leaf table runner. Add a clear round vase with water to about the middle of the vase and colorful flowers (i.e., magenta and purple) floating on top of the water for the centerpiece.

  • Leis! Have them for the guests to wear and as hanging or table decor

  • Tiki torches and string lights are additions that will definitely solidify a tropical feel


  • Have guests wear tropical/Hawaiian attire and get their dance on to some fun tunes!

  • Tropical photo booth: Guests can capture memorable moments in their tropical wear and also consider adding tropical photo props. You can make your own by printing large colorful tropical images (e.g., flamingo, tropical drink, pineapple, aloha sign) and pasting each on a bamboo stick for guests to hold.

  • Tropical coloring pages for children

Don’t let social distancing stop your summer fun! The above celebrations are sure to be entertaining and unforgettable in your own safe place. We can still have ice cream and grill for a chill time, enjoy beach activities, bike and gather for a tiki good time.

We want to see your summer soirees! Tag us on Instagram, @adorn_life_celebrations #adornlifecelebrations

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